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News Release

Region launches updated Open Data portal; seeks feedback

WHITBY, ON October 25, 2016

The Regional Municipality of Durham has launched an updated Open Data portal, offering an enhanced look and feel that makes it easier for community members to access information, including the ability to view information before it is downloaded.

“The Open Data pilot initiative has created increased transparency, enhanced public engagement, and demonstrated leadership around open government—showcasing a commitment to continuous improvement,” said Matthew Gaskell, Commissioner of Corporate Services. “Based on the numbers, it’s clear this data is informative and helpful. However, we want to know more about people’s experiences. It is through this feedback that the Region can develop a portal specific to the needs of our community.”

To date, the Open Data pilot initiative has been successful, with almost 770 information draws from the online catalogue. This relates to a significant amount of data that individuals have taken to utilize, analyze, review and develop mobile apps.

Existing sets—related to geographic information system (GIS) (including child-care centres, community services, education facilities, government offices, health neighbourhood boundaries, and seniors’ residences), Single Line Road Network (SLRN), Durham-wide access points, transit routes, transit stop locations, and General Transit Feed Specification (GTFS)—are now complemented by the recent edition of maps outlining Regional and municipal boundaries.

With the addition of new data, and the updating of the portal itself, the next step in this pilot initiative involves asking the public for feedback about the site. To learn more about the Open Data pilot initiative, to access available data sets, or to provide feedback via email, please visit www.durham.ca/opendata. Please send feedback via the email address listed on the site.

Open Data is a philosophy and practice that requires certain data to be made freely available to the public, in machine-readable format, without any restrictions from copyright, patents or other mechanisms of control. The Region of Durham recognizes the importance of making data freely available to the public, and the expansion of the pilot project aims to increase the scope of this initiative.  

Upon completion of the pilot, which is scheduled for December, data usage will be gathered and analyzed to evaluate cost, benefits and the impact of freely sharing other information in the future. Following this process, recommendations will be made about further use of Open Data at the Region of Durham.

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For more information, please contact Corporate Communications.